Super Rugby Preview – Round 15, part 2

So much sport on this weekend! I.. I love it.

First up we have Super Rugby at its tension filled best. The Sharks, Bulls and Waratahs all are playing must win games. Even Cheetahs fans are secretly hoping their team can magically sneak into the play offs with a run of improbable victories.

After the rugga change the channel and soak up the awesomeness that is the Champions League Final 2011. Can Man United make up for 2009? Will Barcelona show the world they are the dominant club side playing at the moment? It is going to be epic and no mistake.

On to a real man’s game though…

Sharks vs Waratahs

The Sharks were physically dominated last week against the resurgent Bulls and have struggled against the top sides this year. They have a very good side on paper though and need to get the mental game right and fast. Their midfield is vulnerable with Meyer Bosman and Stefan old man river Terblanche not gelling on attack or defense but they have an immense forward pack that should edge the Tahs at the set pieces.

The Tahs have looked mostly average this season and will know that a loss here could seriously dent their play-off hopes. They do have a good track record against the Sharks though and with a game against the Bulls next week will know this may be their best chance of a victory in SA. If the Sharks can cut out the handling errors and improve their defense they should prove too much for the Sydney boys.

Venue: Kings Park, Durban

Kick-Off: Sat, 5:05pm

Prediction: Sharks by 3-10

Bulls vs Cheetahs

The Bulls are back! Since the 2nd half against the Chiefs they have been largely unstoppable. What took them so long?! All of the senior players are back in form (with the possible exception of Spies) and after last week against the Sharks will be in a confident mood on Sat. They have unfortunately lost Fourie Du Preez but have a great back up in Francois purple boots Hougaard, even though he has mostly played wing for them this season.

The Cheetahs are having their best Super Rugby season ever with 5 victories this year. The Ebersohn twins have been a revelation and Ashley afro Johnson is playing the best rugby of his short career.

The Cheetahs are without suspended Rayno Benjamin and again injured Heinrich Brussouw (as long as you are fit for the Bokke, my man) but will put up a good fight and this game could be closer than Bulls fanswould like. The Bulls should win this one at home and maintain their hopes for the play-offs.

Venue: Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria

Kick-Off: 7:10pm

Prediction: Bulls by 10

Reds vs Crusaders

This game should be a cracker. The Reds have been the form team of the tourny and their ability to change their game plan for each oppoition team and indeed mid-game is one of the reasons for this. The Crusaders have not been the dominant team of old lately, being smashed by injuries but with Carter, Read Thorn and Ritchie captain charming McCaw playing will always be dangerous. Sonny boxer Williams is back in the team and it will be interesting to see if the Reds adopt the Cheetahs defensive strategy to try to contain him.

Burglar Cooper vs Dan the man Carter is going to be epic and expect some markers to be laid down for possible RWC2011 match ups in September. This game is tricky to predict and given my pathetic track record perhaps going against what I suggest may win you some money.

Venue: Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane

Kick-Off: Sun, 8:10am

Prediction: Reds by less than 7

rennton

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~ by bowlphilosophy on May 27, 2011.

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